Established during the land boom of the 1920s, Northwood Village is located 2 miles north of downtown West Palm Beach and is home to a hodgepodge of cozy, funky shops like Creme de la Creme Bakery, Harold’s Cofee & Lounge, Malakor Thai, Relish, Diane’s Closet, Table 427, Souvlaki Grill, Africa Now by AK Art Gallery, and many more.
One of the oldest neighborhoods in West Palm Beach it’s a haven for the creative types. On the last Friday of each month, the streets close off for the Art & Wine Promenade, a free outdoor event featuring live music, local artisans, wine tastings and more. On 24th street you’ll find the Center for Creative Education, which hosts art classes — various free and open to the public. A couple streets south you’ll find Lot 23, the place where many of these artists who offer their time and talent teaching these classes call home.
The Taste History Culinary Tour, run by the Boynton Beach-based nonprofit Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History, recently added this beautiful, laid back Northwood Village to its schedule.
It was on this tour that my tastebuds first sampled the food served up at O-BO Restaurant & Wine Bar — grilled pork belly with Asian-styled green beans, salmon resting on a bed of creamy polenta — while listening to Sade’s vocals croon “Jezebel” through the speakers, flames from the tabletop candles swaying their hips to the rhythm. A glass of wine greeted each one us of immediately upon entering, your choice of red or white.
We visited various galleries beginning with Northwood Antiques, followed by Ortiz-Smylka Gallery Studio, Bohemia AG, and ending at Tinson Antiques. Ask me and I’ll say walking the village, alive with its colorful storefronts, is a sensory experience.
Stopping at our next culinary destination, Table 427, my mouth watered just a bit at seeing the colorful paintings gracing its mustard yellow walls. Chef Roberto Villegas, his wife and their son greeted us. We were offered a choice of guanabana (soursop) or pineapple juice. We tasted ahi tuna and watermelon ceviche, and later grilled mahi enveloped in a tasty corn tortilla.
Saying our goodbyes, our guide and executive director of MLFH, Lori J. Durante shares more of the village’s history while I lingered behind with the camera.
We made our way to our final stop, Fresh Catch Seafood and Grill. By then, I couldn’t bear to take another bite. Nearby, there was a basin full of live blue crabs waiting to take a bite out of something.
There’s a Haitian proverb that translates to “When the cat’s belly is full, the rat’s tail tastes bitter”. This cat’s belly was full.
— Cook, Mix, Mingle (@CookMixMingle) February 7, 2015
- Northwood Village: Green Market, Shops and Community (cookmixmingle.com)